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Eli Manning and the Hall of Fame

Let’s worry about axes and labels later. For now, take a look at the graph below. The red dots represent Hall of Fame quarterbacks (or players not yet eligible but very likely to wind up in Canton). The blue dots represent non-HOF quarterbacks. The black dot? That’s Eli Manning.


Okay, so what the heck is this chart? What it’s *not*, is the most sophisticated way to measure the value of a quarterback. Instead, it’s a quick-and-dirty method I calculated to measure quarterback dominance.

  • Step 1) Calculate each quarterback’s ANY/A for each season of his career where he had enough pass attempts to qualify for the passing title (14 attempts per team game). ANY/A, of course, is calculated as follows: (Passing Yards + PassTDs * 20 – INTs * 45 – Sack Yards Lost) / (Pass Attempts + Sacks).
  • Step 2) For each quarterback, award him 10 points if he led the league1 in ANY/A, 9 points if he finished 2nd, 8 points if he finished 3rd, … and 1 point if he finished 10th. A quarterback receives 0 points if he does not finish in the top 10 in ANY/A or does not have enough pass attempts to qualify.
  • Step 3) For each quarterback, add his “points” from each season to produce a career grade.

So in the chart above, the Y-Axis is number of career points, with the X-Axis simply showing the number of quarterbacks on the list. I have included Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Brett Favre, Kurt Warner, and Aaron Rodgers as HOF quarterbacks for these purposes. This is not based on my subjective opinion of those players, but based on my subjective opinion of their likelihoods of enshrinement. The table below shows all 150 quarterbacks2 with at least 6 “points” using this system. Again, this is not intended to be THE SYSTEM — if anything, this would be that — but a quick and dirty method that I think is very easy for us all to understand. We are looking at the best measure of efficiency, then we look at dominance, and we give points for finishing with higher ranks. Nothing more, nothing less.3

1Peyton Manning102Likely
2Dan Marino96Yes
3Johnny Unitas90Yes
4Sammy Baugh89Yes
5Joe Montana83Yes
6Norm Van Brocklin81Yes
7Y.A. Tittle76Yes
8Fran Tarkenton71Yes
9.5Dan Fouts68Yes
9.5Brett Favre68Likely
11Bobby Layne67Yes
12Charlie Conerly65No
13Steve Young64Yes
14Roger Staubach55Yes
15Drew Brees54Likely
16Tom Brady52Likely
17Otto Graham51Yes
18Tommy Thompson50No
20Sid Luckman46Yes
20Bob Waterfield46Yes
20Ken Anderson46No
22Sonny Jurgensen45Yes
23Bart Starr44Yes
24Terry Bradshaw42Yes
25.5Len Dawson41Yes
25.5Philip Rivers41Not El.
28.5Troy Aikman39Yes
28.5Kurt Warner39Likely
28.5Aaron Rodgers39Likely
28.5Boomer Esiason39No
32Milt Plum37No
32John Hadl37No
32Trent Green37No
34John Brodie34No
35Billy Kilmer33No
36.5John Elway32Yes
36.5Daryle Lamonica32No
38.5Warren Moon31Yes
38.5Tony Romo31Not El.
41Tobin Rote30No
41Billy Wade30No
41Jim Hart30No
44.5Joe Namath29Yes
44.5Bob Griese29Yes
44.5Roman Gabriel29No
44.5Ben Roethlisberger29Not El.
47Ken Stabler27No
49Jim Kelly26Yes
49Parker Hall26No
49Craig Morton26No
51Earl Morrall25No
53.5Bobby Thomason24No
53.5Don Meredith24No
53.5Bert Jones24No
53.5Vinny Testaverde24No
56Dave Krieg23No
59George Blanda22Yes
59Paul Christman22No
59Rich Gannon22No
59Jeff Garcia22Not El.
59Daunte Culpepper22Not El.
62.5Jim Everett21No
62.5Mark Rypien21No
65Cecil Isbell20No
65Mark Brunell20Not El.
65Brad Johnson20No
68Norm Snead19No
68Brian Sipe19No
68Bernie Kosar19No
74Johnny Lujack18No
74Tom Flores18No
74Bill Nelsen18No
74Joe Ferguson18No
74Joe Theismann18No
74Steve McNair18No
74Matt Hasselbeck18Not El.
74Chad Pennington18Not El.
74Matt Schaub18Not El.
81Davey O'Brien17No
81Babe Parilli17No
81Bill Kenney17No
81Chris Chandler17No
81Donovan McNabb17Not El.
84.5Phil Simms16No
84.5Neil Lomax16No
88Charley Johnson15No
88Bobby Hebert15No
88Jeff George15No
88Jake Plummer15No
88Matt Ryan15Not El.
92.5Frank Ryan14No
92.5Greg Landry14No
92.5Vince Ferragamo14No
92.5Scott Mitchell14No
97Eddie LeBaron13No
97Jim Finks13No
97Lynn Dickey13No
97Danny White13No
97Carson Palmer13Not El.
101.5Archie Manning12No
101.5Steve Grogan12No
101.5Ron Jaworski12No
101.5Steve DeBerg12No
107Jim Hardy11No
107Ed Brown11No
107James Harris11No
107Steve Bartkowski11No
107Tony Eason11No
107Randall Cunningham11No
107Chris Miller11No
114Frank Filchock10No
114Greg Cook10No
114Jim Zorn10No
114Doug Williams10No
114Tommy Kramer10No
114Erik Kramer10No
114Nick Foles10Not El.
120.5Pat Haden9No
120.5Jay Schroeder9No
120.5Brian Griese9No
120.5Michael Vick9Not El.
120.5David Garrard9Not El.
120.5Russell Wilson9Not El.
129Ace Parker8No
129Fred Enke8No
129George Ratterman8No
129Rudy Bukich8No
129Ken O'Brien8No
129Neil O'Donnell8No
129Craig Erickson8No
129Kerry Collins8Not El.
129Doug Flutie8No
129Eli Manning8Not El.
129Robert Griffin8Not El.
140.5Bud Schwenk7No
140.5Frankie Sinkwich7No
140.5Adrian Burk7No
140.5Lamar McHan7No
140.5Cotton Davidson7No
140.5Virgil Carter7No
140.5Wade Wilson7No
140.5Steve Beuerlein7No
140.5Jim Harbaugh7No
140.5Jeff Hostetler7No
140.5Gus Frerotte7No
140.5Damon Huard7No
150Irv Comp6No
150Jack Jacobs6No
150Bob Celeri6No
150M.C. Reynolds6No
150Butch Songin6No
150Steve Bono6No
150Matthew Stafford6Not El.

So if this system is so simple, why use it? Because it does a pretty impressive job of actually identifying HOF quarterbacks. Consider:

  • The top 11 quarterbacks by this method are in the HOF or will be first ballot inductees.
  • Charlie Conerly is the highest-ranked quarterback not in the HOF. This methodology overstates Conerly’s career in a few ways, but he’s a legitimate borderline HOF contender, and it wouldn’t shock me if one day he’s nominated by the Seniors’ Committee. You can read some more thoughts about Conerly in the footnote, but the main reason he’s overrated here is that Conerly played in the era of 10-12 teams, so finishing in the top 10 was hardly the same accomplishment it is now.4
  • The next highest-ranked quarterback not in the HOF is Tommy Thompson, on the back of (what appeared to be) dominant years in ’41, ’42, ’47, and ’48. But while Thompson was a good quarterback, he’s very overrated in this analysis. In ’41 and ’42, only four quarterbacks qualified for the passing title each year, so finishing 2nd in ANY/A is not that impressive. His performances at the end of the decade were very good, but again, this was a different era and he was competing with only a handful of talented passers.
  • Only two other quarterbacks in the top 305 are not in the HOF or likely HOFers. One is Ken Anderson, the unofficial holder of the “Best quarterback not in Canton” title. The other is Philip Rivers, who just might be into the “likely HOFer” category by the end of 2014. So of the top 30 quarterbacks, we’ve got two guys from the ’40s and ’50s who can “game” the system here, and two quarterbacks who are worthy HOFers. Every one else is in, or will be in, the Hall of Fame. That’s pretty good.
  • The next tier of 20 or so quarterbacks contains five of the final remaining Hall of Fame quarterbacks: John Elway (who was better than his numbers), Warren Moon (who was better than his numbers for a different reason), Joe Namath (also better than you think), Jim Kelly (okay, not my favorite statistical quarterback, but 4 straight Super Bowl appearances helped his candidacy) and Bob Griese (the forgotten HOF QB, and in any event, undoubtedly in the bottom tier of Hall of Fame quarterbacks). The last Hall of Fame quarterback is George Blanda (down at #58), who is as unique as any player in NFL history (which means you wouldn’t want to compare a modern quarterback to Blanda when determining whether he is a Hall of Famer).

Eli Manning? He’s down in the 130s. So no, his statistical profile is nowhere near that of a Hall of Fame quarterback. Frankly, it’s not even worth debating, except with the #2RINGZ crowd. Manning ranked 10th in ANY/A in 20126 and 2009; he finished 5th in ANY/A in 2011, his one legitimately great statistical year. And that’s it.

No really, that’s it. He’s been slightly above average, average, or worse in every other year of his career.7 That’s far below quarterbacks like Trent Green and Tony Romo, and behind guys like Matt Hasselbeck and Donovan McNabb, too. But after all, Eli is the twitter era’s version of Jim Plunkett, right?8

Not exactly. Plunkett was a legitimately outstanding playoff quarterback, to the extent a concept like that actually has any meaning. By placing more weight on the most important playoff games, Plunkett averaged 7.48 ANY/A in ten playoff games against defenses that allowed 4.36 ANY/A in the regular season. He was a top 10 playoff quarterback. Eli, on the other hand, has merely been pretty good. Manning checked in as the 33rd best playoff quarterback statistically, averaging 6.26 ANY/A against defenses that allowed an average of 5.28 ANY/A. Manning was good in the playoffs, but not historically dominant by any stretch. He also hasn’t been nearly as impressive as his brother in the postseason, despite popular opinion.

Will Eli Manning make the Hall of Fame one day? I have no idea. But if he does, he would stand out as a very odd outlier. Manning has had one great regular season, and that one season wasn’t even one of the top 100 quarterback seasons ever. The pro-Manning case takes about three seconds worth of thought, and it is entitled to be given weight commensurate with that level of thinking.

I will close with a fun searchable table, showing the number of “points” produced by each of the 150 quarterbacks in their 10 best seasons. For sorting purposes, I have included the year in the cell for each player. For Peyton Manning, for example, his best four years read 10.2012, 10.2006, 10.2005, and 10.2004. That means he received 10 points (i.e., finished first in ANY/A) in 2012, 2006, 2005, and 2004. Happy searching!

Peyton Manning10.201210.200610.200510.20049.20139.20039.19998.20076.20095.2008
Dan Marino10.199610.198410.19839.19948.19878.19867.19927.19916.19855.1988
Johnny Unitas10.196410.195810.195710.19569.19679.19659.19639.19598.19603.1966
Sammy Baugh10.194710.194510.194010.19379.19439.19428.19498.19448.19417.1948
Joe Montana10.19899.19879.19848.19827.19937.19857.19835.19945.19905.1981
Norm Van Brocklin10.195410.195210.19509.19609.19539.19518.19557.19576.19593.1958
Y.A. Tittle10.196310.19629.19579.19548.19536.19565.19615.19555.19525.1950
Fran Tarkenton9.19759.19737.19767.19746.19726.19706.19696.19676.19655.1964
Dan Fouts10.198510.19829.19839.19819.19788.19808.19794.19841.1974
Brett Favre10.19959.20019.19979.19968.20097.20076.19945.20043.20031.1998
Bobby Layne9.19587.19607.19547.19506.19556.19535.19565.19515.19494.1959
Charlie Conerly10.19599.19488.19577.19567.19557.19527.19495.19544.19581.1953
Steve Young10.199710.199410.199310.19929.19918.19967.1998
Roger Staubach10.197910.197810.197710.19716.19766.19733.1975
Drew Brees10.20099.20088.20118.20067.20046.20136.2012
Tom Brady10.201010.20079.20129.20115.20053.20093.20042.20031.2006
Otto Graham10.195510.19539.19528.19548.19516.1950
Tommy Thompson10.194910.19489.19479.19418.19424.1950
Sid Luckman10.194610.19439.19459.19448.1947
Bob Waterfield10.19519.19509.19468.19456.19494.1947
Ken Anderson10.198110.19759.19828.19745.19732.19772.1976
Sonny Jurgensen10.19678.19708.19617.19645.19624.19663.1969
Bart Starr10.19669.19646.19626.19575.19634.19654.1961
Terry Bradshaw9.19798.19818.19786.19774.19804.19753.1982
Len Dawson10.19689.19667.19626.19716.19643.1967
Philip Rivers10.20089.20109.20097.20134.20062.2011
Troy Aikman9.19959.19938.19927.19945.19981.1999
Kurt Warner10.200110.200010.19996.20083.2007
Aaron Rodgers10.20118.20138.20107.20125.20091.2008
Boomer Esiason10.19889.19869.19857.19894.1993
Milt Plum10.19608.19598.19587.19614.1964
John Hadl10.19738.19647.19675.19663.19702.19711.19681.1965
Trent Green9.20028.20038.20006.20056.2004
John Brodie10.197010.19659.19613.19682.1969
Billy Kilmer9.19728.19736.19745.19755.1971
John Elway7.19876.19986.19976.19934.19962.19951.1986
Daryle Lamonica8.19697.19727.19706.19684.1967
Warren Moon9.19888.19906.19895.19922.19971.1991
Tony Romo7.20096.20076.20065.20114.20083.2013
Tobin Rote9.19568.19635.19583.19573.19552.1951
Billy Wade8.19567.19586.19615.19593.19621.1963
Jim Hart8.19767.19755.19743.19773.19732.19782.1970
Joe Namath10.19727.19685.19695.19672.1966
Bob Griese9.19717.19775.19784.19733.19741.1976
Roman Gabriel8.19677.19737.19694.19703.1971
Ben Roethlisberger9.20057.20104.20074.20043.20122.2009
Ken Stabler10.19749.19764.19772.19731.19791.1975
Jim Kelly9.19908.19915.19894.1992
Parker Hall10.19399.19407.1941
Craig Morton9.19709.19695.19773.1981
Earl Morrall8.19687.19656.19634.1957
Bobby Thomason9.19557.19534.19512.19542.1952
Don Meredith8.19627.19665.19683.19651.1967
Bert Jones10.19768.19776.1975
Vinny Testaverde9.19987.19965.19933.1995
Dave Krieg8.19887.19864.19832.19922.1984
George Blanda10.19615.19604.19533.1954
Paul Christman8.19467.19477.1945
Rich Gannon8.20027.20015.19992.2000
Jeff Garcia8.20017.20005.20071.20031.2002
Daunte Culpepper9.20047.20036.2000
Jim Everett9.19896.19884.19942.1990
Mark Rypien10.19918.19893.1990
Cecil Isbell10.194210.1941
Mark Brunell8.19974.19993.19983.19962.2006
Brad Johnson7.20027.19995.19961.1997
Norm Snead8.19725.19654.19622.1967
Brian Sipe9.19807.19783.1976
Bernie Kosar10.19876.19862.19911.1988
Johnny Lujack9.19497.19512.1950
Tom Flores8.19666.19604.1963
Bill Nelsen9.19685.19704.1969
Joe Ferguson8.19756.19794.1981
Joe Theismann8.19836.19823.19791.1984
Steve McNair10.20036.20012.1999
Matt Hasselbeck7.20055.20024.20032.2007
Chad Pennington10.20028.2008
Matt Schaub7.20114.20104.20093.2008
Davey O'Brien9.19398.1940
Babe Parilli9.19623.19522.19642.19611.1966
Bill Kenney6.19875.19855.19841.1983
Chris Chandler8.19987.19972.2001
Donovan McNabb9.20068.2004
Phil Simms6.19905.19873.19852.1993
Neil Lomax8.19843.19883.19872.1983
Charley Johnson5.19724.19742.19652.19631.19691.1962
Bobby Hebert9.19924.19872.1989
Jeff George8.19995.19971.19951.1994
Jake Plummer6.20034.20053.20012.2004
Matt Ryan7.20085.20123.2011
Frank Ryan7.19636.19661.1964
Greg Landry8.19714.19762.1972
Vince Ferragamo7.19827.1980
Scott Mitchell8.19936.1995
Eddie LeBaron6.19524.19552.19591.1961
Jim Finks8.19523.19531.19551.1954
Lynn Dickey7.19846.1983
Danny White6.19814.19822.19851.1980
Carson Palmer8.20055.2006
Archie Manning6.19784.19792.1980
Steve Grogan5.19793.19833.19781.1977
Ron Jaworski10.19802.1979
Steve DeBerg10.19901.19891.1987
Jim Hardy8.19483.1950
Ed Brown7.19593.19631.1957
James Harris9.19742.1975
Steve Bartkowski6.19805.1983
Tony Eason6.19845.1986
Randall Cunningham10.19981.1990
Chris Miller6.19925.1991
Frank Filchock10.1944
Greg Cook10.1969
Jim Zorn7.19792.19811.1978
Doug Williams7.19812.19881.1982
Tommy Kramer10.1986
Erik Kramer8.19952.1998
Nick Foles10.2013
Pat Haden9.1977
Jay Schroeder7.19902.1986
Brian Griese9.2000
Michael Vick6.20102.20021.2011
David Garrard9.2007
Russell Wilson5.20134.2012
Ace Parker8.1939
Fred Enke6.19482.1953
George Ratterman8.1950
Rudy Bukich8.1965
Ken O'Brien8.1985
Neil O'Donnell5.19953.1992
Craig Erickson8.1994
Kerry Collins6.20022.1996
Doug Flutie4.20004.1998
Eli Manning6.20111.20121.2009
Robert Griffin8.2012
Bud Schwenk7.1942
Frankie Sinkwich7.1944
Adrian Burk6.19541.1951
Lamar McHan5.19572.1958
Cotton Davidson4.19603.1964
Virgil Carter7.1971
Wade Wilson7.1988
Steve Beuerlein6.19991.1993
Jim Harbaugh7.1995
Jeff Hostetler4.19913.1993
Gus Frerotte6.19961.2000
Damon Huard7.2006
Irv Comp6.1944
Jack Jacobs6.1947
Bob Celeri6.1951
  1. For purposes of this post, I have excluded AAFC stats, but combined the AFL and NFL as one league. []
  2. Starting in 1937. Sorry, Arnie Herber, Dutch Clark, Paddy Driscoll, and Jimmy Conzelman. I also am excluding Ace Parker, who was more master of all trades than quarterback. []
  3. And it’s not even adjusted for SOS, like the GQBOAT post. []
  4. He also split time with other quarterbacks from time to time, which means his efficiency numbers don’t account for the fact that he wasn’t putting up the gross value that you might think. As for why he didn’t make the Hall of Fame, the typical reasons apply. He was competing with Van Brocklin, Tittle, Layne, Graham, and Unitas for accolades in the ’50s, and wound up disappointing by winning just 1 title. []
  5. Okay, Boomer Esiason is tied for the top 30. He’s also a borderline HOF candidate, IMO. []
  6. Note PFR lists Manning 12th in ANY/A that year, using 224 dropbacks instead of 224 pass attempts as the floor for qualifying. Since both San Francisco quarterbacks that year fit into that gray area, it’s not unreasonable to say Manning was more like the 11th best passer that year. But what’s the point in splitting hairs when the case is a slam dunk? []
  7. 2014 pending, of course. []
  8. Let’s ignore the fact that Plunkett isn’t in the HOF, of course. []
  • Ajit

    It’s hard to call PM underrated, given that he’s been one of the faces of the league for over a decade, but I think it gets lost just how dominant he is statistically. Search for best season – its Pm. Search for 2nd best Season, he finishes 2nd. Rank by third, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th! and he still leads.

    And yet – I still think the majority of fans and media people would rank Brady higher overall and with a better legacy once they are both retired. Fair? I guess Brady’s legacy itself is so stellar that it’s not a terrible slight, but I still feel it’s an injustice.

    • When I did a look at just the top QBs of the 2000s, the gap between #1 Manning and #2 Brady was huge. If the gap itself were a player, it would have ranked second.

      I use a different methodology than Chase does; I basically use the RANY model, but I include rushing data and take 50 for INTs and 25 for FMBs. The resulting measure is Marginal Adjusted Yards. Anyway, Manning held the mark for best season, best per season average, and best total decade. Frankly, it wasn’t even close.

      Some bad playoff breaks have unfairly diminished his legacy, in much the same way two crazy drives helped Eli’s and three kicks helped Brady’s. I often hear Pats fans say that if two big plays didn’t happen, Brady would have 5 rings; but they rarely mention that if Vinatieri misses two kicks and Kasay doesn’t make the worst mistake of his career, Brady could have zero rings. As always, I have digressed. Without looking at jewelry, I have never seen an honest analysis that doesn’t put Manning as the greatest of all time.

      • sacramento gold miners

        I’ve always believed playoff breaks even out in the end, the 2006 Colts had some breaks in winning Peyton’s lone Super Bowl. I do have Peyton on the short list of greatest QBs ever, but his mediocre postseason play doesn’t put him on the same level as Joe Montana. He’s also not a good cold weather QB, and that affects his ranking as well.

        Eli Manning is definitely on track for Canton, and he was a better regular season QB than Jim Plunkett. Eli’s win over the 2007 Patriots on the biggest stage was one of the more significant Super Bowls, Tom Brady struggled in that game. And while Peyton is the better QB overall, if the question was posed about picking a QB in January to win a playoff game, I don’t know if I would go with Peyton over Eli in that specific situation.

  • What kind of madman would compare Jim Plunkett and Eli Manning? Oh, right.

    To be fair to Eli, he does have a 102 career ANY/A+ compared to Plunkett’s 97. To be fair to actual Hall of Fame quarterbacks, falling solidly behind Jim Everett in career numbers is nothing to brag about.

  • Ace Frehley

    It’s the Hall of FAME which is a measure of how FAMOUS players are not how well they played although superior play usually makes them famous. Just being a Manning makes Eli pretty famous, add the unlikely SBs over the Pats and it’s a compelling story, add one more SB win before he retires and he’s a lock.

    • James

      If story is the reason you want Eli in the HOF, then put his two SB runs in the wing for famous moments and leave it at taht. He doesn’t belong in the HOF proper.

    • I have a sudden desire to hear Paul Stanley’s opinion on Eli Manning.

      In all seriousness, the Hall of Fame has never been treated as only a matter of fame. Jim Plunkett is much more famous than Curtis Martin, but Plunkett is not in the Hall of Fame and Martin is. Any decent running back, particularly in the fantasy era, is more famous than any offensive lineman, but Willie Roaf is in the Hall of Fame and Willie Parker will not be.

      Fame helps people get in because it makes the voters look at their careers less critically, but it is not the sole criterion of induction and never has been treated as such. I think Eli Manning is such a beloved of the “old school” crowd that they are going to try to force him in the same way that baseball “traditionalists” have been trying to force a clearly undeserving Jack Morris into the baseball Hall of Fame. However, that doesn’t make him deserving. It just makes that crowd even more ridiculous.

  • Tom

    Great post, I love “quick-and-dirty” assessments like this, especially when they seem to actually work – there’s no doubt that the “system” does identify existing and future HOF QB’s. Regarding Eli, yes, if he gets into the Hall, it’s the rings, but obviously not just that he has them, but how he got them. Although the Giants D deserves at least half as much credit, if not more, for those two Super Bowl wins (along with some credit to Giants punter Steve Weatherford in 2011 for constantly leaving Brady with his back against his own end zone), the fact remains that Eli made HUGE plays against an opponent that was favored (heavily in 2007) to beat him and his team. In any event, if he gets in, it certainly won’t be because of his regular season stats….

  • Chris

    Looking back at the GQBOAT post, Eli isn’t even ranked. That should speak as to whether he should get in or not. I consider it an insult if he gets in the HOF but Philip Rivers doesn’t.

  • Travis Jones

    Phillip Rivers will get in. Get ready in a about ten years to strike out “Ken Anderson” and comfortably place “Tony Romo” in his hallowed spot as best QB not in the HOF, esp numbers-wise. Not that I think Anderson will get in, it’s just that Romo’s numbers dwarf his, but I can’t imagine anyway he’ll get voted in. In a lot of ways, he is the “Anti-Eli”. Great numbers year after year, but constantly criticized for lack of playoff/big game wins and astoundingly underrated.

  • Brian Hugert

    Wow…this is easily the stupidest system I have ever seen. Like, honestly, NOONE SHOULD TAKE THIS SERIOUSLY. This is actually making me angry, after I finished laughing at this sheer stupidity. So, your saying that YA Tittle is better than Brett Favre, Steve Young, Drew Brees, and Tom Brady? Tittle played when the game of football was relatively young, and the players weren’t even as close to as good as they are now. Eli Manning has almost had a 5000 yard season. If that happened in 2005, he would have had the most passing yards that season. He also had 29 TD’S, which would have been 2nd. Oh, and you’re not taking into the account the fact that Eli has never had a top-tier receiver in his career. For example, his brother Peyton, has had Marvin Harrison (one of the best wideouts of ALL TIME) and Reggie Wayne, who was also a league leading receiver at one point. You just can’t use this system at all. Eli has more throwing yards and touchdowns than Tony Romo. Thats funny, I thought he was far below him?

    • Bryan

      Eli Manning is a slightly better than average QB at best. Brady, Manning, Rodgers…they don’t need the best WR’s to put up big numbers. Marvin Harrison isn’t in Denver, but look at the numbers Peyton is putting up. How many Patriots receivers can you name over the years? The stats speak for themselves. He is definitely not a HOF QB.

      • Brian Hugert

        Yeah, and Peyton has the best receiving core in the game with Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders, a top 5 O-Line, a 12-TD Tight End (and he’s even missed a few games). Everywhere Peyton goes, he has talent. Oh yea, and the Broncos have a never-ending supply of emerging talented running backs. Also, do you watch football? Tom Brady has had Randy Moss, Wes Welker, Hernandez, Branch, and last but not at all least…Gronk. Seriously stop embarrassing yourself.

        • Akash Mehta

          I think this is very interesting because of the neutralization of today’s pass-happy league and therefore, only comparing players to their peers who played under the same rules. However, I really think that using any type of statistical analysis in order to “value” a player is pointless and leaves out way too many factors which make it unreliable and erroneous. For example, it stresses aggregate stats for any given regular season, FAR too much which explains Peyton Manning & Drew Brees’ high point totals. For example, Drew Brees under Sean Payton’s offense in New Orleans has thrown for 4 seperate 5,000 yard seasons. The offense typically inflated Drew Brees’ passing stats because they hardly ever ran the ball and substituted it with screens with guys like Pierre Thomas or Darren Sproles.
          Peyton Manning’s statistical dominance is clear as the gap between him and Tom Brady is abnormally large. That should be your first clue that this method is unreliable and rather misguided. From 2001-2006, the Colts were BUILT to score a lot of points and boast great passing offenses while the Patriots were BUILT to control time of possession and boast great defenses. This could easily be seen when taking a look into the amount of receiving talent that Brady had over the years. Deion Branch, Troy Brown, David Patten, etc..are all examples of players of the “no-name” receivers that Brady won super bowls with. That’s because the majority of the Patriots’ cap was taken up by the elite defensive players on the defense and the offensive line in order to emphasize time of possession. Unlike the Colts teams who wanted to build offensive juggernauts with their cap space and thus, keep very good receivers like Marvin Harrison, Reggie Wayne with very little turnover while keeping an elite offensive line. In order to give you an idea about the amount of receiver turnover they’ve both experienced, this stat reflects it: Peyton has thrown his record 528 TD passes to only 45 different receivers while Brady has thrown his 391 TD passes to 54 different receivers. Anyway, those are two completely different philosophies employed by the Colts and Patriots that impacted everything from roster building to play-calling. Yet, the Patriots usually won those playoff games and SBs because of the commonly used mantra “defense wins championships”. However, Brady has also proved that he can engineer offensive juggernauts like he did in 2007, 2009-now and to possibly an even greater extent than Peyton. So basically you’re penalizing Tom Brady for doing what obviously was best for winning SBs (which is the real goal) in his early years unlike Peyton which explains your results. Your formula wouldn’t have Brady as a likely hall of famer after his 2005 season even if he was undefeated in the playoffs and had 3 SBs and 2 rings up to that point.
          To be honest, that’s what I hate about advanced metrics in general when it comes to football. Unlike baseball, there is so many different factors that seem almost impossible for stats to be able to tell the whole story. That’s also why your formula makes for Eli being in the HOF such an outlier. The committee don’t have an algorithm for who is deserving of enshrinement but they use their knowledge of specific factors that aren’t quantitative to make proper judgement. Eli is a guy that has a high INT amount and a low completion percentage. However, those stats don’t explain you Kevin Gilbride’s offensive scheme that emphasizes a lot of deep and longer developing route trees which requires much more time in the pocket and exposes you to more hits and sacks and eventually, more inaccurate throws + interceptions. Look at his stats in the west coast offense he’s in now. He’s about to have a career season with 5 of his 13 interceptions coming in one game and 26 TD passes. Stats don’t tell the whole story but I enjoyed the post.

    • Ronald

      Eli Manning has 17 Td’s and 6485 yards more than Tony Romo on 1399 more pass attempts.

      Eli Manning also has 75 more INT’s than Tony Romo.

      • Rob

        Ronald the cock sucker tony HOMO! Has one playoff win

  • David Herson

    So two rings (and two SB MVPs, and two SB winning drives) counts for NOTHING in this system? I completely agree that the rings should not be the beginning and end of any HOF discussion, and I personally feel that Eli has more work to do to get in.

    But any system that ignores the most important accomplishment in the sport is just a flawed as one that ignores everything else.

  • charlie serra

    I don’t understand how this could be possible ELI has averaged 24 td and just 14 ints for his career a +10 td to int ratio…look up how many HOF’s have that , Eli has 20+td and 3,000 yds passing for 8 years in a row, check out how many HOF’s have that ….if anything he had a few Bad int years but for the most part GOOD years not bad .. he has been very consistant…..

    • I don’t think anyone here would argue that Eli Manning is or has been a bad quarterback. You don’t generally last a decade as a starter in the NFL is you aren’t at least pretty good. However, the stats say Eli was never more than just good. The stat line you mention is really good for the 1990s, but it leaves a lot to be desired in this era.

      Manning has never ranked higher than 8 in AV, 5 in completions, 4 in yards/touchdowns/YPA, 7 in passer rating, or 5 in ANY/A. The only black ink on his resume is for interceptions, where he led the league three times.

      • Actually, I would argue that Eli is a pretty bad quarterback now and has been for some time. Over the last five years, he’s thrown 12 more INTs than any other QB. He’s led the league in picks three times. His career ANY/A is 5.80, just a smidge worse than Ryan Fitzpatrick. And I don’t think Eli has really been much better than Ryan Fitzpatrick. Give him a few extra points for the postseason, but it is a joke if he makes the HOF. Take away a crazy lucky play (the helmet catch) and that Victor Cruz catch against the Jets that helped get the Giants into the playoffs in ’11 and Eli is basically Neil O’Donnell. In fact, let’s have Eli grow a beard so we can lump him in with every mediocre-to-fairly bad quarterback that had a good beard.

        I’m happy he’s been so bad lately, since I think he probably would have made it with merely league-average play after 2011.

        • Rob
        • Rob

          30 tds 4,400+ yards sit down boy how many rings does Ryan have let alone playoff wins

  • Chase Stuart


  • Scott D.

    Nicely done! Compelling reasons that Eli is not a HoF QB. At least, he isn’t until Plunkett is. I have a Raiders bias, admittedly, and Plunkett is my all-time favorite, but if NOT winning is the great sin of Marino, Moon, Tarkenton and others, shouldn’t Plunkett’s fantastic post-season winning be a great virtue that overcomes his early career sins? Anyhow, I love these kinds of discussions and I’ll throw my hat into the ring of “Ken Anderson is easily the greatest QB not in the Hall, and it’s not even close.”

    • Rob

      Eli has more yards more rings and more tds and he’s payed 4 less years and has a better td to int ratio and also yore dumb cocksucker

    • Rob

      I don’t think ken anderson has any rings at all actually

  • Hank

    as of now Eli MAnning does not make the Hall Of Fame, but if he leads the Giants to another Super Bowl championship with another Super Bowl MVP, he would join Montana, Bradshaw, Aikman and Brady as starting QB’s with 3 rings and Montana as only player with 3 Super Bowl MVPs then he is a lead pipe cinch, and all these stats are stuff for you nerds to debate, not to mention that Eli is the only QB to lead two game winning drives in the last 2 minutes in Super Bowl history so there is Eli with 2 and several others with 1. So a 3rd Super Bowl MVP cements his legacy, and all those other numbers are a joke, if you are the greatest player in the greatest game of the season 3 separate times, that is greatness and those Super Bowl MVP trophies will be the only stats that anyone voting will care about, so judging from this article you will obviously be rooting against the Giants so you can promote your statistical formula

    • I needed a good laugh. Thanks.

    • Rob

      Dude right know if eli plays 5 more years of average football lets say 25 tds to 13 ints I think he will get into the hall of fame. But the reality is next season Eli’s likely to have a 30+ td year and a 4,700 + yards year at least that’s what I think cause of the receive lineup.also a big factor will be the improved offensive line ny is getting a good linemen from Iowa not to mention the o-line is already doing good

  • Dave Cronk

    Durability will also be a factor in the decision. Eli currently has the 3rd longest consecutive games streak in history behind only 2 sure fire HOF QB’s. That will most certainly count for something. Regardless of who hes has played in the same era with he will still have over 40k yards, 3500 completions and in all likelihood 300 TD’s. That alone puts him on a very small list of QB’s, the vast majority of which are in Canton, the others not in Canton built their stats on 20 year careers. Let’s not forget those 2 rings and 2 MVP’s. Folks like to criticize his INT’s but fail to look at the history behind the INT, specifically the list of QB’s with most INT’s. I’ll leave that bit of research up to you but can tell you there are many above him, many of which are in the HOF or on there way to the HOF. When you compile all the positive statistics and positive results it is foolish to think he doesn’t belong. But on the bright side he’s on his way to yet another 4k season and perhaps the best statistical season of his career… maybe that will help to boost his cred. But haters gonna hate.

    • Dave Cronk

      Ken Anderson? Really? Jim Plunkett? Really?

    • Rob

      Thank you so much Dave. I think the guy who made this list is either an absolute idiot or is just making up imaginary stats about eli mannning cause he hates him that much. I mean this guy really needs to do His research I mean considering a lot of the qbs he has on that list have 40+ more interceptions than eli and most of the them played less then eli I mean like what the hell is going through this guys head

  • Maty


  • DB

    I wish I’d seen this post earlier so I could have made a more timely comment. I’m a huge Giants, since Phil Simms rookie season and at this point I don’t believe Eli belongs in the HOF. Obviously, things can change and in the unlikely event that Eli wins 2 or 3 more rings, then it will be hard to keep him out.

    I will say this, I’ve watched every snap that Eli has taken in his career and probably 90% of Phil Simms’ snaps. Eli is ranked 129 on this list and Simms is 84. This does not feel right to me. There is no doubt in my mind that Eli is better than Simms in pretty much any way you can evaluate them. Let me say it another way, Eli is significantly better than Simms.

    I love statistical analysis, so I’m not the type who pokes fun at “numbers guys”. I also understand that this metric is kind of a smoke test and not a comprehensive ranking system. So, I hate to say it, but once in a while, there will be a player who’s worth just is not represented in the aggregate numbers. I think Eli is one of those guys.

    • Richie

      Obviously, things can change and in the unlikely event that Eli wins 2 or 3 more rings, then it will be hard to keep him out.

      Interesting thought experiment. Manning already has 2 rings. The only QB with 2 rings who isn’t in the HOF is Jim Plunkett (and the active guys).

      2 rings is almost an automatic qualifier. So Eli comes short of the HOF because his regular seasons have been up and down, and even the years he won the Super Bowl, his teams weren’t considered “elite” during the regular season. If Eli won 1 or 2 more “fluky” rings, would that alone be enough to get him in the HOF? 2014 was one of Eli’s best seasons (maybe his best). If he puts together another 5-6 years of seasons like this (but doesn’t win another Super Bowl), would that be enough to turn him into a HOFer?

      It looks like his 2014 was worth 1 more point in the ANY/A rankings above. Essentially he has been the 10th-best QB every year of his career. I guess that really isn’t a HOF standard.

      • Chase Stuart

        Actually, Eli finished 12th in ANY/A, or 11th if you remove Carson Palmer (he technically qualifies, by I would say he morally does not).


        • Richie

          Oh, even worse. I used 400 attempts as the threshhold so didn’t include Fitzpatrick.

          Which, means that Ryan Fricken Fitzpatrick had the 6th-best ANY/A. By far his best ANY/A season.

  • Justin Taub

    Eli is a hall of fame qb!! When he retires he will be in the top ten alltime in yards, tds, completions and Super Bowl MVP awards!!

  • Max Wall

    Eli Manning
    NFL season record for 4th-quarter touchdown passes (15)
    NFL season record for game-winning drives (8)
    Most road wins in a single regular season and postseason by a starting quarterback (10)
    Most passing yards in a single postseason (1219)
    New York Giants all-time leader
    (Pass attempts,Pass Completions,Passing touchdowns, Passing yards)
    2 Super Bowl mvps
    Eli will end up in the top ten all time in passing yards, completions, tds, game winning drives, comebacks.

  • Rob

    |Eli manning stats| 39,755 yds 259 tds 185 ints 4.6 td ratio. 3.3 int ratio Reg. season wins to losses 91 – 76. Yds att 7.1 |Eli manning accomplishments| 2Super Bowls 3pro bowls ( even tho the pro owls a joke and dosent have anything to do with skill ) playoff win to loss record 8-3 best ratio of all time in the playoffs……… If you don’t believe me look it up all of these are facts. Eli also holds the record for yards in the postseason for all time!!!!!!!! That means 1910 – 2015. Everybody thinks tom brady has every record In the postseason but NO you’re wrong ELI has thrown for 1200 + in the postseason tom Brady’s most is 900+ with RANDY MOSS!!!!….. Eli’s postseason TDS to INTS is 17 – 8 Otto Graham’s TDS to INT in the postseason is 14- 17 witch is someone you thought thought had better stats than Eli but that just shows how ignorant and stupid you are next time you write a fricken 30 paragraph story on bashing a qb who clearly know that I just proved didn’t even deserved to get bashed . So next time you try something like this check your facts and one more thing. Eli mannings got a good chance of having a 4,800 + yd season next year so then maybe your shut your mouth

  • Rob

    God! You’re so hipacritic how could you think Ryan fitz Patrick could be on your list and not eli manning it’s like you’re ignoring reality you’re acting like eli has thrown for like 30 td passes and 500 interceptions cause that’s basically what you would have to have to not be on this list I can’t believe youth ink Joe Namath Belongs on this list he has 1 Super Bowl eli has 2 Joe Namath has thrown for 50 more ints then he did touchdowns eli has thrown for 70 more tds than he has ints. There that’s settled . and how in the name of god can you believe that Ryan Fitzpatrick is on the list and not eli manning I didn’t know it’s possible to say someone with 2 Super Bowl MVPs is bad

  • Shilpi Sawrikar

    Nice Analysis. Apart from the above, I will give 2 points for every home playoff win and 4 points for road playoff wins. For winning Super Bowl, you get 10 points and 5 points for losing the super bowl. 1 point for winning a regular season game. 5 points for being league MVP. Please run the numbers using this criteria as well and your correlations will get even stronger. Eli Manning will no longer be that bad but he won’t still be Hall of Fame worthy. Thanks.